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I need a brief for preparing a training session


I am running a train the trainer course with staff who are already doing training, but not particularly well. I want to set them a task of preparing a simple training session of 10-12 min duration, where they will train others to juggle balls, put a nappy on a baby, 3 ways of shuffling cards, etc.
I would like an example of an instructional brief that can be sent our with joining instructions.
Ann-Marie Skinner

4 Responses

  1. an example plus…
    Hi Ann-Marie
    I can provide you with an example that I used for a TTT. The session was “billed” as a “skill development day” as they were experienced trainers who felt a bit miffed at being asked to attend a TTT when they had been doing the job for some years. The trainers were given a much longer slot and were asked to produce a session on something relevant to their day job (thus they produced something they could re-use as well as having a vehicle for the practice. If you e-mail me I’ll send a copy of the instruction I gave them (one page of A4)
    [email protected]

  2. train the trainers
    If they have been training for some years they may feel slightly offended at the task you’ve set them. In my view, it’s important to take them seriously and set them tasks that, as Russell says, they can use in other situations.

    Another approach would be to look at style and planning, and the ability to set outcomes:

    “By the end of this session participants will be able to….., will know about…. and will understand….” .You couild then get them to plan a 10 minute session about a small chunk something they have to train anyway. Say they’re training in communication, they could prepare a mini-session on teram briefing : “by the end of this session my participants will be able to set an appropriate agenda for a team briefing” and they have to include a 5 minute slot for input on agenda setting, a slot for a 2 minute paired discussion and a 5 minute slot for action planning — something like that. Then they have something useful to take away and implement, and can comeback to you with a sense off how it worked.

    The brief you can send out could include “Participants will be expected to prepare a short training session (10-12 minutes) on a small topic relevant to their current work that includes input, discussion and action planning”

  3. Instructions that mirror the training
    I agree with the comments already made, that having people do something they can use afterwards and see the relevance of will help them to buy into it. In addition, it would be useful, as well as good practice, to mirror some of the points in your instructions that you will be covering in the training. You could let participants know in advance the key objectives that would form the basis for evaluation of a good training session. Presumably, this will be feasible because they all have at least some experience as trainers and would be likely to be familiar with some of the jargon. If not, you could include a short glossary or pre-course reading.

    The key points I am thinking of are such things as:
    1.) Set clear SMART objectives for the mini-session;
    2.) Have a clear beginning, middle and end;
    3.) Make sure you include XXX stages of the learning cycle (specifying which ones you want them to include);
    4.)As it is a mini-session, limit it to what the learner “must” (as opposed to “could” or “should”) know.

    You might also want to ask them to include additional things, such as:
    5.) address a variety of learning styles (referring to the model you use);
    6.) use exercises / demonstration / presentation (whichever is most relevant to your organisation and the subject being taught);
    7.) Specify techniques / materials to be used;
    8.) Include an element of assessment or evaluation.

    We do a 3-day intensive training course for new trainers, and on days 2 and 3 we get them to do 10 minute mini-sessions, and these are some of the requirements we specify (the assessment / evaluation aspect is only included in the session on day three). We then get them to evaluate themselves and each other against the set criteria. That way, if we make suggestions/criticisms, they are about meeting the criteria, rather than about what the person is like as a trainer, which makes criticism a bit less threatening.

    You might want to include a training plan proforma which guides them to the types of things which need to be included, thereby focusing their attention on the actual training session, rather than spending time thinking about how to record the information.

  4. Changing Trainers Behaviours
    Ann Marie,
    You say they are experienced but are not doing it particularly well.
    Do you have data to support this, which behaviours are you trying to change?
    Is it the same behaviour for each or does each present a different challenge.
    The answer to this question should give you the approach to take.
    If the problem is common, you could lead a discussion on training behaviours, to allow them to identify the difficulties with several behaviours, including their own.
    The mini-teach will then be an opportunity to demonstrate that they have learnt from the session.

    If each has a different challenge you could use the mini teach to let their peers identify areas for development.

    You can then brief the session as a “Skills Development” session as already recommended by others.

    When I run these sessions, I have the students prepare two sessions, one at the beginning to identify areas for development, and one at the end after we have covered all the appropriate skills we expect to see if the students can change their delivery to reflect what they have learned.

    Both sessions include peer feedback along the lines of “What worked well?” and “What could be improved?” and a “What one thing will I take from this?”. We start with the person delivering first and then their peers. If they are experienced, you have very little to add.

    In the sections that you deliver, to cover the skills etc, you have the ideal opportunity to model appropriate behaviours and then encourage feedback from the group at appropriate points to show that you can take feedback as well.

    I am happy to discuss further off line if you wish.

    Good luck

    Dennis Major


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